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In the wake of dense fog Wednesday morning, enough snow can fall in the Northeast at the start of the weekend to cause slippery travel in some areas.
Conditions causing the stubborn fog Wednesday will not be repeated Thursday morning.
According to AccuWeather.com Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams, "The pattern through next week will bring a series of storms originating from western Canada, traveling across the Midwest then moving off the coast of the mid-Atlantic and New England."
@justinmundie tweeted: "If we can't get a decent snowstorm in the next 3 weeks, i give up. Pattern looking prime for cold/storms"
"It's like a conga line of storms," commented Senior Meteorologist Henry Margusity.
These storms, known as Alberta Clippers, will generally be weak and fast-moving, so that they will fail to bring much precipitation to most locations. A few spots can experience a a brief burst of snow.
The nature of the weather pattern will mean a bit of snow almost every day or every other day to parts of the region, especially over the Appalachians. Each storm will also take a slightly different track and can kick up a little wind.
One of the storms that can bring a general snowfall and slippery travel is scheduled for Friday night and Saturday.
A couple of the dozen or so clipper storms through next week will have a chance to strengthen and turn the corner upon reaching the New England coast.
There is a chance that the clipper storm to start the weekend will strengthen and slow down enough to throw substantial snow across part of New England, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Such a storm could cause snow-clogged highways and flight delays due to wind and deicing operations.
A period of light snow and flurries over a snowstorm is most likely for much of the mid-Atlantic and New England. However, it does not take a major snowstorm to coat roads and make for slippery travel. A mix of rain and snow could fall right along the mid-Atlantic coast.
Yet another clipper storm could bring a period of light snow or flurries to parts of the mid-Atlantic Saturday night.
In addition to the series of clipper storms, waves of colder air will return to the Northeast.
"The pattern will favor frequent temperature changes from one day to the next," Abrams said.
One day will bring near- to above-average temperatures only to be followed by a cold blast the next.
"How windy, warm and cold it gets on either side of the frequent storms will depend on how strong those storms become in the first place," Abrams said.
A piece of the polar vortex will set up near Hudson Bay, Canada, through the end of the month and will act as a giant pinwheel for the waves of cold air and clipper storms reaching from the Upper Midwest to the Northeast.
Meanwhile, it appears there is no hope for drought relief in the Southwest in the short term.
"While storms and cold frequent the Midwest, Northeast and the interior South, much of the West will remain dry and rather warm," Abrams said.
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